The FBI on Monday fired Special Agent Peter Strzok, who worked on both the investigations into Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s use of a private email server and Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election, U.S. media reported.
The Washington Post reported Strzok’s lawyer said FBI Deputy Director David Bowdich fired his client even though the office at the FBI that handles discipline decided Strzok should just face demotion and a 60-day sentence for sending anti-Trump texts.
The report added that Strzok’s firing happened despite assurances that he would be dealt with under normal disciplinary processes.
The U.S. Justice Department Inspector General in a report in June said comments Strzok made in text messages about preventing then-presidential candidate Donald Trump from getting elected were antithetical to the Justice Department’s core values.
However, the report concluded that there is no evidence the political views of Strzok impacting the handling of the investigation into Hillary Clinton’s use of private server and email for official business during her tenure as secretary of state between 2009 and 2013.
Special Counsel Robert Mueller removed Strzok from the Russia investigation after discovering the text messages.
The Special Counsel is investigating allegations that Russia meddled in the 2016 US election and possible collusion between Moscow and the Trump campaign.
Russia has dismissed claims that it interfered with the vote and both Trump and the Kremlin have denied accusations of collusion.